The 2022 college football season is in the books and the final game of the season was a real snoozer for everyone outside of the Georgia fanbase as the Bulldogs went back-to-back as national champions with a 65-7 win over TCU.
Of course, Ohio State fans will play what-if until the end of recorded time wondering what would have been if the Buckeyes could have held on in the Peach Bowl, knocking Georgia out and taking its place in the CFP Championship Game and a date with TCU.
Oddsmakers felt that the Buckeyes would have been a significant favorite, much like Georgia, but that is all academic now.
The Associated Press Top-25 final poll of the year came out on Tuesday morning, not bound by the results of the College Football Playoffs in terms of locking down who the No. 1 and No. 2 teams were by result of the championship game, but even with that, Ohio State found itself as the No. 4 team in the final rankings, the spot where the Buckeyes were at going into the playoffs.
Obviously, Georgia finished No. 1 in the poll, capturing all 63 first-place votes while TCU was second and Michigan finished third.
The Buckeyes did receive eight votes as the No. 2 team in the nation by writers and broadcasters selected to participate in this poll. Ohio State play the eventual national champions to a one-point game, a game where the Buckeyes held 14-point leads at two different times.
TCU fared much worse in its game with Georgia after defeating Michigan, the team that handed Ohio State its only regular season loss.
Despite Ohio State’s near-win in the Peach Bowl, seven voters had the Buckeyes No. 5 in the nation while two voters had Ohio State No. 6 in the nation, rewarding Tennessee for its win over Clemson in the Orange Bowl and Alabama for its win over Kansas State in the Sugar Bowl.
It is all for posturing at this point, you either finish No. 1 or you don’t. For what it is worth, this is Ohio State’s 5th top-five finish in the last six years as a national championship has remained elusive over that stretch.
Ohio State recorded wins over No. 7 Penn State and No. 18 Notre Dame this season while dropping games to No. 1 Georgia and No. 3 Michigan.
It will be a long offseason filled with questions before the Buckeyes take the field again (outside of the spring game) when the Buckeyes open the year on the road in Bloomington (Ind.) against the Indiana Hoosiers on September 2nd.
That is only 235 days away, give or take. But who’s counting?